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PBS Reno STEM Works | Washoe County Sheriff's Office

PBS Reno STEM Works

Washoe County Sheriff's Office

This episode explores what it takes to become a crime scene investigator and what a sheriff's office does. The Washoe County Sheriff's Office's crime scene investigator Elise LaRocco, Deputy Jackie Rigsby and Systems Technician Justin Cardella, explain what their jobs are at the office and how they play a role in keeping the community safe.


STEM — STEM stands for science, technology, engineering, and math. It represents an interdisciplinary and integrated approach to gathering hands-on experience and applying “real-world” knowledge. People who work in STEM fields use knowledge in science, engineering, technology, or math to understand the world around us and to solve problems.

Burglary — the act of breaking and entering a dwelling at night to commit a felony (such as theft).

Crime scene — the place where a crime happened.

Evidence — something that shows proof.

Taser — a gun that fires electrified darts to stun and immobilize a person.

Body Camera — a video camera that is worn on clothing and used to continuously record activity in front of the wearer

Dash Camera — a video camera that is mounted on the dash of a vehicle to continuously record activity in front of a vehicle.

Patrol Car — a police automobile often used to patrol communities and are connected with headquarters by a two-way radio or computer.

DNA — the molecule inside cells that contains the genetic information responsible for the development and function of an organism.

Deputy — a second in command or assistant who usually takes charge when his or her superior is absent.

Detective — one employed or engaged in detecting lawbreakers or in getting information that is not readily or publicly accessible.

SWAT — a police or military unit specially trained and equipped to handle unusually hazardous situations or missions.

Detention — a period of temporary state if being held in custody prior to disposition by a court.


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